How to help kids with bad spelling?

[deleted account] ( 2 moms have responded )

My 9 year old daughter is a terrible speller and I'd love some advice from people as to help her improve. She's a keen reader and has a good reading level. I thought this would help, but it doesn't seem to. Sometimes I practice spelling words with her, with lots of repetition, but 2 weeks later she'll be spelling the words wrong again. There are some words that we have practiced for years now and she still can't write them.

Any tips?


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Shawn - posted on 02/18/2010




I have an 8 year old in third grade that has trouble with phonics. Because of her phonics her reading is falling. I just bought hooked on phonics from ebay. You can also see if her school has spelling city. You can put in new and old words and they play games with them. The site is

Karen - posted on 02/17/2010




I have a 6 y.o. and it's frustrating (at least for me, she doesn't seem to care) for me to see the same words in the following week's lists and have them spelled wrong when she got them right the first time. I feel your pain! My DD is reading at a 4th grade level so maybe spelling comes later? Anyway, one of the things that helps her that started as a joke with her and her Dad is to spell the words backwards, too. It seems to reinforce the spelling when having to think about it both ways. They were just being silly. The other thing he does (he has waaay more patience than me) is to quickly have her repeat the spelling if she gets something wrong. She'll correct the spelling and then he'll say something like "how was ___ spelled?", "how was that again?" It's treated as a game but makes the spelling a bit more automatic. The other thing I've found that has helped is to have her write them down in addition to spelling it verbally. For some reason that seems to reinforce the learning, especially since the tests are written. However, remember that English is supposed to be the hardest language to learn (I"ve read) for a reason. My DD's teacher also recommended for spelling games. It seemed to help in the beginning. Good luck!

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